v. interesting post from Art & War

Art & War: Responses to Iraq

I’ve been reading The Art Kettle by Sinéad Murphy from Zero Books. Discussing examples from the British art world, Murphy argues that, “in its simultaneous monopolizing of the creative impulse and designation of that impulse as necessarily extricated from any purpose, as for nothing, what we call ‘art’ has rendered un-real the possibilities for ‘free thinking’ and for resistance that are supposed to lie at the heart of our political system” (p.5). Murphy argues that, in limiting the meaning of art as the sphere concerned with that which is proper to art (a self-referential discourse within which the main question is always, “But is it art?”) and divorcing it from the criterion of usefulness (“What is it for?”), art as it is currently constituted in Britain (the focus of the book) serves to keep matters that might be political contained within the confines of the aesthetic. Art today functions primarily…

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